Friday, August 28, 2009

Prophecy of Jesus

I'm anticipating that when I get to the genealogies where it states the family line of Jesus there will be some protest. No need to worry. This will just be an extension of the double standard with which atheists treat any and all of these documents from antiquity. In the atheist mind, the very fact that these independent documents were later compiled into the New Testament renders them not just suspect, but totally untrustworthy. Nevertheless, this is for you Glen.

Remember, if someone was trying to identify whether or not someone was, indeed, the promised Messiah, the suspected Messiah would have to fit these criteria.

Born of a virgin
The Prophecy - Isaiah 7:14 (Written about 690 years before Jesus was born).
“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son and she will call his name Immanuel.” (Since everyone did it, this would not be much of a sign if it was just a man marrying a virgin or a young girl)
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 18:24 & 25 (Matthew - Historian, friend and follower of Jesus and an eyewitness to the ministry, death and resurrection of Jesus).
“She was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit, and Joseph kept her a virgin until she gave birth to a son.”
============

From the seed of Abraham
The Prophecy - Genesis 22:18 (Written about 1440 years before Jesus was born)
“And in your seed all the nations of the world shall be blessed.” (God speaking to Abraham).
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 1:1
“The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.”

This determines that of all the races of the world, we could look for The Saviour to come from the Hebrew race.
=============

Son of Isaac
The Prophecy - Genesis 21:12 (Written about 1440 years before Jesus was born).
“For Isaac is the son through whom My promise will be fulfilled.” (See Matthew chapter 1for a continuation of Jesus’ genealogy record)

Abraham had two sons. God eliminates one half of the lineage of Abraham in prophesying the lineage of Jesus.


Son of Jacob
The Prophecy - Numbers 24:17 (Written about 1400 years before Jesus was born)
“I see in the future of Israel, far down the distant trail that there shall come a star from Jacob, this ruler of Israel.”

Isaac had two sons. God eliminates one half of the lineage of Isaac prophesying the lineage of Jesus
================

Tribe of Judah
The Prophecy - Genesis 49:10 (Written about 1440 years before Jesus was born).
“The sceptre shall not depart from Judah until Shiloh comes and to him shall be the obedience of the peoples.”

Jacob had 12 sons out of which came the 12 tribes of Israel. God eliminates eleven of the twelve tribes of Israel in prophesying the lineage of Jesus.
===============

Family line of Jesse
The Prophecy - Isaiah 11:1 (Written about 690 years before Jesus was born).
“The royal line of Jesse will be cut off, chopped down like a tree. But from the stump will grow a shoot, yes a new branch, the Messiah from the old root.”
===============

House of David
The Prophecy - Isaiah 23:5 (Written about 690 years before Jesus was born).
“ For the time is coming says the Lord, when I will place a righteous branch upon King David’s throne. He shall be a King who shall rule with wisdom and justice.”

Jesse had at least eight sons. Now God eliminates all of Jesse’s sons except David in prophesying the lineage of Jesus.
=================

Born at Bethlehem
The Prophecy - Micah 5:2 - (Written about 750 years before Jesus was born)
“O Bethlehem you are but a small Judean village, yet you will be the birthplace of my King who is alive from ages past.
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 2:1
“Jesus was born in the town of Bethlehem of Judea.”

God, in prophecy, now eliminates all the cities and towns in the world but one for the entrance of His Son to planet earth.
===============

Preceded by a messenger
The Prophecy - Isaiah 40:3 (Written about 690 years before Jesus was born).
“I hear a voice calling in the wilderness, make a road for the Lord.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 3:1
“John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness.”
===================

Ministry to begin in Galilee
The Prophecy - Isaiah 9:1 (Written about 690 years before Jesus was born).
“But there will be no more gloom for her who was in anguish in the land of Zebulun and Neaphtali, by the way of the sea on the other side of the Jordan, Galilee of the gentiles.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 4:12
“He withdrew into Galilee and leaving Nazareth He came and settled in Capernaum, which is by the sea, in the region of Zebulun and Neaphtale. From that time Jesus began to preach.”
=================

Ministry of Miracles
The Prophecy - Isaiah 35:5 & 6 (Written about 690 years before Jesus was born).
“Then the eyes of the blind will be opened, the ears of the deaf will be unstopped, the lame will leap like deer, the tongue of the dumb will shout for joy.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 11:4 & 5
Jesus said, “Tell John about the miracles you’ve seen Me do, the blind I’ve healed, the deaf who hear and the dead raised to life. And tell him about Me preaching the good news.”
=================

Teacher of parables
The Prophecy - Psalm 78:2 (Written over many centuries but completed about 300 years before Jesus was born).
“I will open my mouth in a parable. I will utter dark sayings of old.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 13:14
“All these things spoke Jesus to the multitudes in parables and He was not talking to them without a parable.”
==================

Enter Jerusalem on a donkey
The Prophecy - Zechariah 9:9 (Written about 520 years before Jesus was born)
“Rejoice greatly oh My people, shout with joy, for look, your King is coming , He is the righteous one, the victor, yet He is lowly, riding on a donkey’s colt.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 21:2,4, & 5
“Just as you enter the village you will find a donkey tied there with its colt beside it. Untie them and bring them here.”
====================

Stumbling stone to the unbelievers
The Prophecy - Psalm 118:22 (Written over many centuries but completed about 300 years before Jesus was born).
“The stone which the builders rejected, has become the corner stone.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - 1 Peter 2:7 (Peter was one of Jesus’ closest friends and followers. In any list of disciples, Peter’s name always appears first. Peter was an eyewitness to the ministry, death and resurrection of Jesus)
“He is very precious to you who believe and to those who reject Him, well the same stone that was rejected by the builders has become the cornerstone. He is the stone that some will stumble over and the rock that will make them fall. They will stumble because they will not listen to God’s word or obey it.”
=================

Resurrection

The Prophecy - Psalm 16:10 (Written over many centuries but completed about 300 years before Jesus was born).
“For you will not leave me among the dead. You will not allow your beloved one to rot in the grave.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Acts 2:31
“He was neither abandoned to hades nor did His flesh suffer decay.”
(Acts was written by Luke. He was a physician and a historian of extraordinary detail and accuracy. The Gospel bearing his name was the work of what today might be called investigative journalism. Luke was a convert to Christianity and took part in the ministry of the early Church).

The following were prophesied from 1000 - 500 years before Jesus was born but were all fulfilled in one day.

>Betrayed by a friend
The Prophecy - Psalm 41:9 - “Even my close friend in whom I trusted, who ate my bread has lifted up his heel against me.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 26:49 & 56 - “So now Judas came straight to a Jesus and embraced Him in a friendly manner. Jesus said, “My friend, go and do what you have come for.”
==================

Sold for 30 Pieces of silver
The Prophecy - Zephaniah 11:12 - “If you like give me my pay, what ever I’m worth. So they counted out 30 silver coins.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 26:15 - “Judas asked how much will you pay me and they gave him 30 silver coins.”
==================

Money thrown into God’s house
The Prophecy - Zechariah 11:13 - “And the Lord told me, toss it into the temple treasury this magnificent sum they value you at. So I took the thirty coins and threw them in.”
The fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 27:5 - “And he threw the pieces of silver into the sanctuary and departed.”
=================

Forsaken by his disciples
The Prophecy - Zechariah 13:7 - “Strike down the shepherd and the sheep will scatter.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 26:56 - “Jesus said, This is all happening to fulfil the words of the prophets. At that point all the disciples deserted Him and fled.”
================

Accused by false witness
The Prophecy - Psalm 35:11 - “These evil men swear to a lie. They accuse me of things I have never even heard about.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 26:59 - “The entire Jewish supreme court assembled and looked for witnesses who would lie about Jesus.”
=================

Quiet before his accusers
The Prophecy - Isaiah 53:7 - “He was oppressed and He was afflicted yet He never said a word.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 27:12 - “And while He was being accused by the chief priests and elders, he made no answer.”
====================

Hands and feet pierced
The Prophecy - Psalm 22:16 - “They pierced my hands and feet.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Luke 23:33 - “And when they came to the place called the skull, they crucified him.”

Crucifixion had not come into the Jewish system until hundreds of years after Psalms was written. It was unheard of at the time of Psalms.
==============

Made intercession for his persecutors
The Prophecy - Isaiah 53:12 - “Yet He bore the sin of many and interceded for the transgressors.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Luke 23:34 - “Father forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
===================

Hated without cause
The Prophecy - Psalm 69:4 - “Those who hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of my head.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - John 15:25 - “Jesus said, “But they have done this in order that the word may be fulfilled - They hated Me without cause.”
================

Friends stood afar off
The Prophecy - Psalm 38:11 - My loved ones and my friends stay away, even my own family stands at a distance.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Luke 23:49 - “All His acquaintances and the women who accompanied Him from Galilee were standing at a distance seeing these things.”
==============

People shook their heads
The Prophecy - Psalm 109:25 - I also have become a reproach to them. When they see me they wag their heads.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 27:39 - Those who were passing by were hurling abuse at Him, wagging their heads.”
===================

Garments parted and lots cast
The Prophecy - Psalm 22:18 - They divided my garments among them and for my clothing they cast lots.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - John 19:23 & 24 - The soldiers took his outer garments and made four parts. They said “lets not tear the tunic, but cast lots for it.” (John was Jesus’ closest friend. He looked after Jesus’ mother after her son’s execution. He was an eyewitness to the ministry, death and resurrection of Jesus).
====================

Gall and vinegar offered Him
The Prophecy - Psalm 69:21 - They gave me gall for my food. For my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 27:34 - They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with gall and after tasting it, He was unwilling to drink.
==============

His forsaken cry
The Prophecy - Psalm 22:1 - “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 27:46 - About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken Me.”
====================

Committed himself to God
The Prophecy - Psalm 31:5 - “Into they hand I commit My spirit.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 27:46 - Jesus cried out with a loud voice, “Father into thy hands I commit My spirit.”
==================

Bones not broken
The Prophecy - Psalm 34:20 - He keeps all his bones, not one of them is broken.”
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - John 19:33 - When they saw that He was already dead, they did not break his legs.”
===================

His side pierced
The Prophecy - Zechariah 12:10 - They will look on me whom they have pierced.
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - John 19:34 - But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear.
================

Darkness at noon
The Prophecy - Amos 8:9 - I shall make the sun go down at noon and make the earth dark in broad daylight.
The Fulfilment of that Prophecy - Matthew 27:45 - Now from the sixth hour darkness fell upon all the land until the ninth hour.
===============

Buried in a rich man’s grave
The Prophecy - Isaiah 53:9 - He was buried like a criminal in a rich man’s grave.”
The Prophecy - Matthew 27:57 - There came a rich man from Arimathea and took the body and laid it in his own tomb.

Jesus had no control over the prophecies about:
1. Place of birth
2. Time of birth
3. Manner of birth
4. Betrayal
5. Manner of death
6. People’s reaction
7 Piercing, and
8. Burial

Once again, think about these words:
Professor Peter Stoner, Editor of ‘Science Digest’ has calculate that the odds of the 20 prophecies of what happened to Jesus on the last day of His life here on earth, to be 10 ^ -157, against them coming true in one man, accidentally. Scientists agree that 10 ^ -50 is the same as zero - impossible.

To those who encountered Him but refused to believe what He taught, Jesus had this to say.

(John 5:46 & 47) Jesus said, “It is not I who will accuse you before the Father, Moses will. For you have refused to believe Moses. He wrote about Me but you refuse to believe him, so you refuse to believe Me. Since you don’t believe what Moses wrote, no wonder you don’t believe Me either.”

(Matthew 13:17) Jesus said, “For I tell the truth, many prophets longed to see what you see and hear what you hear.”

(Mark 12:36) Jesus said, “When David spoke, the Holy Spirit was speaking through him when he said it.”

(John 10:34) Jesus said, “The Scriptures cannot be untrue.”

To neglect such awesome evidence will surely come at an awesome cost. Jesus promises however that to respond positively will come with an awesome reward.
Jesus was talking about the same Scriptures we have today. In the next two verses, Jesus indicates that “all” of the Old Testament included prophecy of His coming.

(Luke 24:25 & 27) “How foolish you have been and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken.” And beginning with the Law and all the Prophets, Jesus explained to them what was said in all the Scripture about Him.”

(Luke 24:44) Jesus said, “Everything must be fulfilled that is written about Me in the law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.”


I think you also asked about the AD70 reference.
Before I get to that let me remind of Isaiah 52:13 - 53:12. This is probably the most famous references to Messiah. It’s worth a read if your memory is fuzzy.

. In 2 Chronicles 7:19-22 God says if Israel's sin reaches a certain level, He'll destroy the temple, exile the people, and leave them in a state of judgement. This comes to pass.

. Daniel 9:24 says that God will have mercy on His people. God gives a revelation about the temple being rebuilt. BEFORE THIS temple is destroyed several things are going to take place, including the bringing of everlasting atonement - the final dealing with sin. The important reference isn't to AD70. The important reference is to the temple being destroyed and Messiah coming prior to that date - which of course Jesus did.

. The prophet Haggi 2:6-9 lives to see the second temple built but it is nothing like the first. Yet, Haggi said that the glory of the second temple will be greater than the first. God would fill the second temple with His glory. When God says He’ll fill the temple with His glory, that can only apply to His presence.

. The prophet Malachi 3:1-5 says the Lord will come to his temple, purifying some of His people and bringing judgment to others. Malachi uses a Hebrew term that always refers to God Himself: the Lord - He will come to that temple.

. Because the second temple was destroyed in AD70 atonement for sin had to be made and the divine visitation had to take place prior to the temple being destroyed.

So:
What divine visitation did take place if not for Jesus?
When else did God visit the second temple in a personal way?
Who else atoned for sin?
How else was the glory of the second temple greater than the first?

Either the Messiah came two thousand years ago or the prophets were wrong and we can discard the Bible. But the prophets weren’t wrong.

Some at this point will say that Jesus didn’t bring peace to earth, as prophecies say will happen. The Talmud asks whether the Messiah will come with the clouds of heaven as is written in Daniel 7:13 AND as Jesus told the High Priest that He would when He comes again, or gentle and riding on a donkey, as in Zechariah 9:9. The rabbis said if we’re worthy, he’ll come with the clouds of heaven, meaning swiftly and powerfully; if we’re unworthy, he’ll come meek and lowly. They believed (we know in hindsight that it was in error), it’s an either / or situation. Actually it’s both / and. They’re both true of the same person.

So, in summary, God’s intent was never to keep Israel as an isolated nation , but that through Israel the entire world will come to know the one true God. That has always been his heart. We see in the Scriptures that this messianic figure will be both priestly and royal - He will deal with sin as well as rule and reign. He will first suffer before He is raised up and exalted; He will both come riding on a donkey meek and lowly, as well as come in clouds of glory. He will first be rejected by His people and will be a light to the nations. He will suffer terribly for our sins as a righteous substitute. The power of His deliverance from death will cause the ends of the earth to worship the one true God. We also see that redemption had to come and there had to be a divine visitation before the second temple was destroyed in AD. So who is it? Either the Bible is false or the Messiah was and is Jesus. This is not speculation. This is historical fact.

32 comments:

Flute said...

Born of a virgin
Isaiah 7:14

The Jewish tradition has accordingly never considered Isaiah 7:14 as a messianic prophecy. Jewish scholars argue that this is a Christian misinterpretation. The word "virgin" is a mistranslation that in some bibles. Modern scholars translate it as "young woman". If you read the rest of Isaiah you see that the sign was for Ahaz and it was fulfilled in the days of Ahaz. Jesus was not named Immanuel, what does the "butter and honey" refer to? Which were the two kingdoms during Jesus' lifetime that were abandoned?(Isa. 7:16)

Flute said...

18and blessed themselves in thy seed have all nations of the earth, because that thou hast hearkened to My voice.'

Is not a prophecy.

And God said unto Abraham, Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the lad, and because of thy handmaid. In all that Sarah saith unto thee, hearken unto her voice. For in Isaac shall thy seed be called.

Also not a prophecy of the Messiah, YHWH says to Abraham Isaac his descendants shall be named.

Flute said...

Numbers 24:17 (Young's Literal Translation)

17I see it, but not now; I behold it, but not near; A star hath proceeded from Jacob, And a sceptre hath risen from Israel, And hath smitten corners of Moab, And hath destroyed all sons of Sheth
.

Did Jesus smite the corners of Moab and destroy the sons of Sheth?

Genesis 49:10

Did Jesus gather all the people? Did ALL the people obey him? The next verse says "he will wash his garments in wine" did Jesus do that?

Flute said...

Isaiah 11

1And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots
:

I checked 4 different Bibles. Your version of the verse seems very different.

Let's read the next few verses to see what happens when HE is born.
"the lion shall eat straw like the ox."
"for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea. "
"he shall smite the earth... he shall slay the wicked."

Flute said...

Born at Bethlehem
Micah 5
Finally a messianic prophecy!

2But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel
...
Thine hand shall be lifted up upon thine adversaries, and all thine enemies shall be cut off...

And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD, that I will cut off thy horses out of the midst of thee, and I will destroy thy chariots:

11And I will cut off the cities of thy land, and throw down all thy strong holds:

12And I will cut off witchcrafts out of thine hand; and thou shalt have no more soothsayers:

13Thy graven images also will I cut off, and thy standing images out of the midst of thee; and thou shalt no more worship the work of thine hands.

14And I will pluck up thy groves out of the midst of thee: so will I destroy thy cities.

15And I will execute vengeance in anger and fury upon the heathen, such as they have not heard
.

Okay, the Messiah is a conquering military ruler... That defeats the enemies of Israel.

Ministry to begin in Galilee
Isaiah 9

1Nevertheless the dimness shall not be such as was in her vexation, when at the first he lightly afflicted the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, and afterward did more grievously afflict her by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, in Galilee of the nations
.

Clearly not a messianic prophecy.

False witnesses:
11False witnesses did rise up; they laid to my charge things that I knew not.

12They rewarded me evil for good to the spoiling of my soul.

13But as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth: I humbled my soul with fasting; and my prayer returned into mine own bosom.

14I behaved myself as though he had been my friend or brother: I bowed down heavily, as one that mourneth for his mother
.

Obviously not a Messianic prophecy.

salvage said...

Is it possible that they went through the Bible and tailored to story of Jesus to match up with the prophesies in order to "fulfill" them?

Makarios said...

Well, I don’t think so. I mean, people knew Jesus. They knew His family, His brothers and sisters. They knew the fact surrounding His life. Anything that departed from the facts would have been shot down immediately.

salvage said...

>Well, I don’t think so. I mean, people knew Jesus.

No, not really. There are only two dubious historical sources and the Bible. Jesus was pretty much unknown to the vast majority of the planet for at least 200 years after his death.

>They knew His family, His brothers and sisters. They knew the fact surrounding His life.

How do you know they knew? The thing is a lot of Jesus's story isn't particularly original. Most of it has classic mythological and folk tale themes.

>Anything that departed from the facts would have been shot down immediately.

By who? Who would shoot down anything in the Gospels when they were written? What we know is that 30 years after his death a few men started writing about Jesus, we know that Christianity was an obscure cult in the Roman Empire for over 300 years. Who would be in a position to shoot any of it down?

The problem here is you are saying that the Bible is true because the Bible says it's true. Surly you can that isn't a very compelling argument?

Flute said...

The Gospels were written decades after Jesus died. In Greek. A language that it is unlikely that Jesus' family spoke.

There was TV, newspapers and the internet. How would Jesus' family know what people into other towns were saying about him?

Flute said...

Anything that departed from the facts would have been shot down immediately.

Then why the contradictions? They can't even get Jesus' year of birth right. (Gospels give different dates)

Flute said...

Committed himself to God and His forsaken cry
Free me from the trap that is set for me, for you are my refuge. Into your hands I commit my spirit; redeem me, O LORD, the God of truth.
Jesus quotes a psalm. Self-fulfillment.

Bones not broken
17 The righteous cry, and the LORD hears And delivers them out of all their troubles.
18 The LORD is near to the brokenhearted And saves those who are crushed in spirit.
19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the LORD delivers him out of them all.
20 He keeps all his bones, Not one of them is broken.
21 Evil shall slay the wicked, And those who hate the righteous will be condemned
.

Read in context, this is not a messianic prophecy, it's a psalm about righteous people still having troubles.

Makarios said...

I'm saying that the accounts of Jesus' life that we have compiled in what we call the New Testament are true because:
. We not only have four biographies that have proven to be historically accurate by the norms of secular evidence gathering,
. Tthey are true based on archaeological confirmation and
. They are true based on over two dozen extra Biblical references to the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, as well as to His disciples.

Do you know that there are more references to the life of Jesus within 150 of His death and resurrection than there are to the accomplishments of Julius Caesar? That probably doesn’t mean anything to you but it does to me.

Makarios said...

They can't even get Jesus' year of birth right. (Gospels give different dates)"

Would you point me to those verses please?

Flute said...

Stumbling stone to the unbelievers
The Prophecy - Psalm 118:22 (Written over many centuries but completed about 300 years before Jesus was born).
“The stone which the builders rejected, has become the corner stone.

How is Peter quoting a psalm a fulfillment of prochey? And it's not a prophecy, it's written in present tense. "has"

Enter Jerusalem on a donkey

Gah, you do know one of the gospels has Jesus riding -two- donkeys, right? The theory is that Mark read the Greek translation of Zechariah that was available at the time, which mistranslated Zechariah.

Flute said...

"According to Matthew and Luke Jesus was born on or before 4 BCE, during the reign of Herod the Great.
But Luke said Joseph and the pregnant Mary had to go to Bethlehem for a census by Quirinius. This is reliably dated to 6 CE. Or ten years after the death of Herod. "

Flute said...

"prochey?"
Heh, obviously I meant prophecy, it's early morning here...

salvage said...

>We not only have four biographies that have proven to be historically accurate by the norms of secular evidence gathering,

That is absolutely not true. There is no archaeological evidence for Jesus whatsoever. There are two written account from years after his death, outside the Bible. They are viewed with suspicion by most historians as they appear to have be inserted into actual historical texts well after the original author / historian's death.

There is no physical evidence that there ever was a Jesus Christ of Nazareth who caused any sort of fuss.

The Romans were well aware of their role in history and wrote of every significant thing that happened in the Empire, the wins and losses (losses always made the Romans more focused to win next time) and Jesus is not noted in his day.

>Do you know that there are more references to the life of Jesus within 150 of His death and resurrection than there are to the accomplishments of Julius Caesar?

Um... well in the Bible I guess there is but in historical documents the exact opposite is true. We have his endless writings about his career both political and military, we have accounts from his friends and enemies, official government documents, hand written journals of those who served under him. Eyewitness accounts of the historians of the day. The physical evidence from a bust to his image on thousands of coins leaves no doubt that at one point the most powerful man is the world was Julius Caesar.

However there is nothing even close to that for Jesus. Two doubtful references and the Bible, that's it.

Yes, lots was written of Jesus once Christianity began to spread but nothing of his miracles was reported in his day. Not even his death. Why is that? You'd think someone raising people from the grave would get more attention.

>That probably doesn’t mean anything to you but it does to me.

No, it does, I'm a big fan of history and study it a great deal, Ancient Rome is one of my favorite periods.

The only evidence you have that Jesus existed is the Bible and saying that the Bible says it's true is not a compelling argument, don't you agree?

Makarios said...

Flute: I don’t get it.

. Herod lived /reigned 37 - 4 BC.

. Quirinius was in office on two occasions, 6 - 4 BC and 6 - 9 AD.
A census is recorded for both terms of office.

. Best guess is that Jesus was born in either 7 or 6 BC. So I don’t see the problem.
Let’s not miss the important point here. Jesus was born.

Flute said...

In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria

"The date of the census, like the death of Herod, can also be dated with some precision. Josephus clearly states that the census took place thirty seven years after Caesar defeated Antony at Actium, which was fought on September 2, 31 BCE (another precise dating based on astronomy) based on our present system of reckoning. This means that census under Quirinius took place in the year AD6. [2] We also know, from Roman sources, that Quirinius was legate (or governor) of Syria between Volusius Saturninus and Caecilius Creticus Silonus, which makes his tenure last for six years, from 6 to 12 CE. [3] These dates are therefore consistent with Josephus' reckoning."

Herod the Great died in 4bc. See the problem now? The Bible says while "Quirinius was governor of Syria" and during the reign of Herod the Great. Almost a decade apart.

Makarios said...

I'm a big fan of history"

You may be a big fan, son, but you aren' very good at it.

Glen20 said...

I have this as a text file, I downloaded it in the early days of the internet.

Harmonization
The normal "explanation" was that the census referred to by Luke was an earlier census. And to maintain their beloved dogma of Biblical inerrancy, they had also suggested that Quirinius was twice governor of Syria, once in 6 to 12 CE and earlier during the reign of Herod.

These explanations are typical of the ones offered by the more conservative theologians. They have no grounding in any historical fact, the only motive is to try and save the Bible from any inconsistency. Let us list out the historical facts against such an explanation.

Firstly, there is no historical documentation of a census under Roman auspices earlier than 6 CE in Judea. An earlier census is also impossible for a few other reasons. As Josephus mentioned, in 6 CE the census provoked a revolt among the Jewish people who had never taken kindly to foreign domination and to censuses. Even when the census was done by King David himself it was not viewed in a favorable light. Thus we have the book of Chronicles attributing David's desire for census to the influence of the devil:

I Chronicle 4:1
And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel.

As I have mentioned, a people who had historically been hostile to even their own King taking a census would not submissively allow some foreign power do the same. And according to Josephus, they didn't. If an earlier census had occurred it would have provoked a similar reaction from the Jews which would have been impossible for historians to have missed. Some have suggested that the earlier census was carried out by Herod in accordance with Jewish customs and this would have prevented any riots from the inhabitants of Palestine. This explanation is equally unacceptable. Herod, being an Idumean, was considered by the Jews to be as foreign as the Romans! It simply stretches credulity to assert that there was an earlier census conducted in Judea which went unnoticed by historians.

As I have also mentioned earlier, the Roman census is taken primarily for taxation purposes. It only became necessary in Judea in 6 CE after Archelaus was deposed and the province of Judea came under direct Roman rule. Before this Judea was a "client kingdom", i.e. under Roman domination but not under direct Roman rule. No Roman census in a client kingdom had ever been recorded. At any rate Herod the Great was a very obedient subject of Rome who paid his dues properly. There was no need for Rome to intervene directly with any kind of census in Judea.

Glen20 said...

Part two of the text file:
The second point of the conservative apologists is that Quirinius was governor of Syria twice, once in 6 CE and once earlier, during the reign of Herod the Great. This suggestion (apart from the obvious need to save the faith of the theologians) is based on a fragmentary inscription found in Antioch which supposedly referred to Quirinius as the governor of Syria at an earlier date than 6 CE.

However this explanation is, as usual, flawed. The suggestion that the inscription could be understood to refer to Quirinius a governor was first made by the apologist Sir William Ramsey (1851-1939). The inscription simply mentioned that Quirinius was honored for his role in achieving a military victory. It was Ramsey who guessed that Quirinius' reward for his role was an earlier appointment, prior to 6 CE, as governor of Syria. Nothing in the inscription even suggests this. It is not surprising that most historians are of the opinion that the inscription does not provide any evidence to support the assertion that Quirinius was governor of Syria earlier than 6 CE.

Furthermore we know that the two Roman governors of Syria during the last years of Herod's reign was C. Sentius Saturninus who held the post from 9 to 6 BCE and P Quintilius Varus was his successor from 6 to 4 BCE. And it was Quintillus Varus who, as the governor, suppressed the uprising that occurred after the death of Herod. The only years in which we have no record as to who the governor of Syria was in 3 to 2 BCE, by the time which Herod was already dead
.

Makarios said...

What does it matter where he was governor? Luke is dating his account by telling us who was doing what and where. He could have just as easily said who was Pharaoh in Egypt.

You atheists are a hoot. If I quote Josephus, “Oh his writings are full of inaccuracies.” But when it suits your cause all of a sudden every revolves around what Josephus wrote.

So the conclusion you reach is that Jesus was never born?

Glen20 said...

So the conclusion you reach is that Jesus was never born?

Who said that?

Flute said...

What does it matter where he was governor? Luke is dating his account by telling us who was doing what and where. He could have just as easily said who was Pharaoh in Egypt.
...
So the conclusion you reach is that Jesus was never born
?

It matters because it's an obvious contradiction. I haven't seen anyone use that to reach the conclusion that Jesus was never born.

salvage said...

>You may be a big fan, son, but you aren' very good at it.

Could you expand on that? Where am I wrong?

Makarios said...

"It matters because it's an obvious contradiction. I haven't seen anyone use that to reach the conclusion that Jesus was never born."

. It’s an obvious lack of understanding on our part. Over and over and over and over again, all down through history, sceptics have said this is wrong and that is wrong, this never happened and that never happen. And all down through history sceptics have been proven wrong again, and again and again.

I’m not asking you to believe what I'm saying, but I believe that this is just one more example of where there is a piece of evidence missing.

I say this especially because Luke has been such an utterly dependable historian. When someone is dependable in areas that don’t really matter, it’s a pretty sure bet that they are dependable in areas where it does matter.

. Point two. Is this an area that matters? Or is it a secondary issue. For example. JFK’s assassination accounts have what you and Glen would call contradictions. Does that mean that JFK wasn’t killed? No. The details may or may not be interesting but they are NOT the main issue. Jesus was born and that, among other things regarding His life is what you need to deal with.

. Finally, it wouldn’t matter if the dates re: Quirinius were bang on - would it? You would still reject Jesus as the Son of God because your rejection of God is not based on evidence. Your rejection of Creator God’s relevance in your life is a matter of the will, a matter of choice.

Makarios said...

Could you expand on that? Where am I wrong?"

You're not aware of the evidence that's available.

salvage said...

>You're not aware of the evidence that's available.

Such as?

Flute said...

JFK’s assassination accounts have what you and Glen would call contradictions.

If accounts gave the date of JFK's assassination and were a decade wrong, I would start wondering what else the account was wrong about.

You would still reject Jesus as the Son of God because your rejection of God is not based on evidence. Your rejection of Creator God’s relevance in your life is a matter of the will, a matter of choice.

There is as much evidence of Jesus being the son of a god as there is that Mohammad is a prophet. I don't believe in things that I know aren't true. It's not a matter of will. What you believe is not a matter of will. Can you make yourself believe there is a unicorn in your bathroom? And REALLY believe it? No, of course you can't. Belief is not a matter of will.

Flute said...

Also, almost every "prophecy" you've given was not a prophecy at all. I suggest actually looking up these verses you have quoted and seeing for yourself.

Makarios said...

Such as?"

Are you suggesting that it wouldn't be a complete waste of time? I've given this evidence in a fairly recent post - within the last couple months. If you're such a big historical fan, you can go look for it.

Flute: Like I said, I don't think there is a "decade" error. I believe the error is our missing information. As to the prophecies, again, what we have in the Old Testament is the unfolding story of God's plan to bring salvation to the world, through the nation of Israel generally and Jesus the Messiah specifically. The "prophecies" or identifying traits or whatever you want to call them (what race He would be from, what tribe He would be from, how He would be killed, that He would be betrayed by a friend etc.) had to apply to the Messiah, AND they had to be fulfilled prior to the destruction of the second temple which took place in AD70.

Each and every one of them applied to Jesus and to no one else.

It's good enough for me. It's not good enough for you. Life goes on.